Film Box Retrospective: “Bringing Up Baby”

By Kathleen Ellison

September 27, 2012

When it comes to romantic comedies it’s hard to find a good one. They’re always predictable and they always seem to have the same plot, but nonetheless romantic comedies are the perfect thing to relax with on a lazy afternoon. In my opinion, the best romantic comedies are the old ones. I found that “Bringing Up Baby” is one such movie, especially if you’re looking for originality. It definitely kicks the genre of romantic comedy in the face with its screwball story.

This film, from 1938, is directed by Howard Hawks and stars the Hollywood legends Cary Grant and Katherine Hepburn. I have never seen anything like it. The movie involves a zoologist, car stealing, ripped clothes, an intercostal clavicle, a million dollars, a dog named George, and a leopard named Baby. Trust me when I say there are not too many movies like this.

When David Huxley (Cary Grant), a soon to be married paleontologist, finally gets his longed for intercostal clavicle to complete his brontosaurus, all that’s left to make his life complete is to convince the attorney of a wealthy socialite to give his museum a million dollars. Everything seems to be going well until David gets tangled up with Susan Vance (Katherine Hepburn), an eccentric girl who is determined that David help her with her new pet jaguar, Baby.

This screwball movie is a prime example of the amazing talent of Grant and Hepburn. Grant’s facial expressions were enough to make me giggle along with his humorous reactions to Hepburn’s crazy antics. Hepburn’s off the wall attitude mixed with her quirky remarks make the whole plot so much more fun and enjoyable. The way Grant and Hepburn play off each other really keeps the movie bouncing with nonstop entertainment.

The slapstick humor and witty dialogue in this movie is a fresh change from some of the raunchier humor in today’s movies. The plot has one ironic and amusing twist after another. If the line “when a man is wrestling a leopard in the middle of a pond, he’s in no position to run” doesn’t get you to watch it, then just remember your missing out on Grant in women’s clothes.

If you’ve seen the movie and want to share your thoughts, comment on this article at lhueagleeye.wordpress.com.

 Contact the columnist at kae472@lhup.edu
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Posted in: A&E

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